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Old 07-23-2010, 11:52 AM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
310 posts, read 1,769,648 times
Reputation: 212
Default Easiest way to find water leak in window?

Just finished my basement and now I'm seeing that a window in the basement has a leak on the top. Window never leaked in the what past year and half so I'm guessing we must have "jarred" it lose.

My FIL installed a ledge for the window. I'm thinking as he was trying to make the ledge flush, he must have pushed the bottom of the window out which in turn just loosened the top of window.

I went above the window, above the ceiling tile thinking maybe the water was coming from the main floor. Both insulation and wood was dry which makes me think the leak is around the window frame and no where else.

So we went outside and tried to caulk(silicone) around the siding and above the outside window but water still comes in. No window expert but I think we missed, LOL.

If we wanted to find where this leak is, what is the easiest way if possible to do this?

thanks
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Old 07-23-2010, 12:51 PM
QIS
 
Location: Redlands, CA
597 posts, read 1,436,902 times
Reputation: 325
Hi Jedi5,
What exactly are the conditions that exist when you notice the leak? Heavy rain? Any rain? Sprinkler system operation? Are there interior water sources like kitchen or bath above? Do you mean the top of the window frame? Near the inside or the outside? Maybe you could post some nice pix!
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Old 07-23-2010, 01:48 PM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
310 posts, read 1,769,648 times
Reputation: 212
I guess just any rain. Last night it rained pretty bad over here and the water came in.

Yeah, top of the window frame. No, nothing above the window that could be a water source. If it was a water source, then we'd water all the time.

I'll try to post a pic later on.
Thanks for the suggestion!
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Old 07-23-2010, 02:37 PM
QIS
 
Location: Redlands, CA
597 posts, read 1,436,902 times
Reputation: 325
Good! It would be nice to have a sideways and straight-on shot.
I'm going to guess you mean the top, towards the exterior of the house.
In the meantime we can take a first bash at answering your question!
In the absence of any obvious water intrusion points or facilitators you have to do a water spray test!
Again without seeing it I would get a house, put on one of those straight adjustable nozzles and start lightly spraying around the window starting from below the left side(about half way down the window) then about six inches above the window and over to about 1/4 way across the top. Lightly spray for a while with someone watching from the inside. If nothing then try area right over the top of the window, if still nothing then,the right side using the same light spray.
That "C" shaped test spray pattern can be recreated right on up the wall till you get some water intrusion. The trick is gauging how long to spray in each area. You are essentially trying to recreate a light rain and isolate the intrusion point(s) right? So do the best you can to spray a while and estimate how well you have done emulating the approximate rainfall needed,then wait a few minutes to see if the leak appears. If not,the proceed to the next part of your "C" pattern and try the same introduction of the light water spray to that area, then wait. Again, if there are no obvious gaps of construction foibles, it may take some time!
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Old 07-23-2010, 02:51 PM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
310 posts, read 1,769,648 times
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here is a straight on pic of the window.
the leak is located near the top of the red craft paper.

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v231/Jedi5/photo-1.jpg (broken link)

did u want a side shot of the exterior as well?

i'll have to do the nozzle test later when i have someone with me to help out.
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Old 07-23-2010, 03:31 PM
QIS
 
Location: Redlands, CA
597 posts, read 1,436,902 times
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OH man! My bad, yes! Pictures of the exterior, straight on and side ways. Clear,but, not necessarily that close ! A full shot of the interior is good too. I should have been more clear, I'm sorry!
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Old 07-24-2010, 10:53 AM
 
Location: North Burb Chicago
310 posts, read 1,769,648 times
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QIS here are the pics I took this morning.
Yes it did storm here last night.
Right above we have a deck.

Straight shot:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v231/Jedi5/photo-3.jpg (broken link)

Close up shot above window.
You can see where we tried to silicone around window frame:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v231/Jedi5/photo-1-1.jpg (broken link)

Here is the side shot:

http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v231/Jedi5/photo-2.jpg (broken link)
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Old 07-24-2010, 08:52 PM
QIS
 
Location: Redlands, CA
597 posts, read 1,436,902 times
Reputation: 325
It stormed last night and the leak showed up?
The additional information of having a deck above is very compelling!
Deck/wall joints, especially if the is a sliding door to the deck are very prone to non/poorly draining or non existent flashing, ledger board fastener penetration leaks etc..
Is there ANY chance that the deck/wall joints above are the culprit? Lets see>
Please do the light spray water test around the upper sides and top of the window and wait to see if your leak develops. That way we can test the top of the window. There are siding details there that can certainly drag some water in if not lapped or whatever correctly; you need to get that out of the way.
If nothing; then really closely visually examine the deck/wall details at the area above the window in question. Are there gaps, clogged flashings, no flashing??? Check the underside of this area out from your ladder and from your hands and knees on the deck. Look under the slider if present. If there are any questionable areas that are obvious, try to seal( when everything dries out) and then try the light spray test on the top of the deck above the window then wait! Hopefully no leak will appear and you may have to address some flashing or siding or ledger board issues. If there is nothing obviously wrong, you will have to spray test first on the top of the deck and wait, if nothing below the deck.
The light spray tests is just that, not a solid stream and not a light mist. You are trying to emulate an appreciable, yet not unusual rain pattern on the side of the house to try to isolate a specific( hopefully) or general area of water intrusion. Once that is done, you have to make decisions based on the construction details as to how best to remediate the issue.
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Old 09-06-2010, 12:30 PM
 
4 posts, read 16,091 times
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Start at the bottom of the window, possible the wall, with a watter hose with sprayer . work your way up the wall very slowly until you see water start to come in . This will tell you at what height the water is coming in at and probable where the leak is at. Good luck, eddie@pro-caulkaustin.com
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